• Sat. Sep 30th, 2023

Global Fleet Chairman, Jimoh Ibrahim, loses appeal over N69.4bn debt; bank accounts still frozen

ByBassey Udo

Jun 9, 2023

Lagos businessman and Chairman, Global Fleet Group, Jimoh Ibrahim, has lost his appeal before the Court of Appeal Lagos State Division challenging the seizure of 12 of his assets and freezing of all his accounts by the Asset Management Corporation of Nigeria (AMCON) over his alleged N69.4billion debt.

The Court dismissed Ibrahim’s application after upholding the submissions by AMCON’s lead counsel, Kemi Pinheiro, a Senior Advocate of Nigeria (SAN), in the matter. 

Ibrahim, now a senator-elect to the 10th Senate, was the first defendant in the case, with his company as the second defendant. 

Both were represented by two Senior Adcocates of Nigeria (SANs), Niyi Akintola and Bolaji Ayorinde, respectively. 

On November 18, 2020, AMCON, through its Debt Recovery Agent, Pinheiro Legal Partners, took possession of all 12 properties belonging to Ibrahim on the order of Justice Rilwan Aikawa of the Federal High Court in Lagos. 

The assets include the NICON Investment Limited building at Plot 242, Muhammadu Buhari Way, Central Business District, Abuja; NICON Hotels Limited building at Plot 557, Port-Harcourt Crescent, off Gimbiya Street, Abuja, and the NICON Lekki Limited building, also at No. 5, Customs Street, Lagos. 

Other properties seized by AMCON include the Abuja International Hotels Limited building located at No. 3, Hospital Road, Lagos; another property at Plot 242, Muhammadu Buhari Way, Abuja; the former Allied Bank Building on Mile 2, Oshodi Expressway, Lagos; Energy House located on No. 94, Awolowo Road, Ikoyi, Lagos; NICON Building at No. 40, Madeira Street, Maitama, Abuja; a residential apartment at Road 2, House A14, Victoria Garden City, Lagos; NICON Hotels building at Plot 3, Road 3, Victoria Garden City, Lagos, as well as the NICON Luxury Hotel building, Garki 1, Federal Capital Territory (FCT), Abuja. 

In addition to the takeover of the properties by AMCON, the lower court had also ordered the freezing of all accounts belonging to the embattled businessman and his companies, including Global Fleet Oil & Gas Limited, and NICON Investment Limited, all of whom were defendants in the protracted suit No. FHL/L/CL/776/2016. 

Reacting to the outcome of the appeal, AMCON spokesperson, Jude Nwauzor, who described the ruling as another confirmation of the determination of AMCON to fully realise its debt recovery mandate on behalf of the federal government, said the agency would remain in possession of all the properties attached by the orders of the court till further notice.” 

“No matter the class or personality of the obligor, AMCON will not be deterred by the antics of its debtors to recover the huge debt owed it by some high-profile, but recalcitrant debtors in the interest of the Nigerian economy and the good people of Nigeria,” Mr Nwauzor said. 

He affirmed the commitment of AMCON to continue pursuing its mandate as expected guided by the enabling Act as amended.   

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